By Melissa Currey
My name is Melissa Currey, and I’m pursuing to be elected to the Osage Minerals Council (OMC). I’m the daughter of Mary Ann Hill Simpkins and granddaughter of Rose Hill, Original Allottee. I’m a member of the Pawhuska District and Ponca Clan. I reside in Pawhuska, Oklahoma with my husband, Rex Currey. We have two adult children, Ahren J. Currey and Morgan Rose Currey, who were raised within our culture and have grown into successful adults.
I have 28 years of experience with the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA). My career began in the Realty Office. After years of training and gaining knowledge, I transferred to the Minerals Department, spending the last seven years as a supervisor, and then later returned to Realty as the Branch Chief. In 2004, I was promoted to Deputy Superintendent and later to Superintendent until my retirement in 2013.
My time at BIA is relevant to my campaign because of my training and experience. My duties in the Minerals Department included managing lease operations, preparing and setting up lease sales, reviewing and processing mineral leases, assignments and division orders. This work required collaboration with engineers, accountants, and field inspectors in the daily operations of the Osage Mineral Estate (OME). As Superintendent, I participated in numerous negotiated rule making workshops; and regularly attended OMC meetings, working to develop the OME through negotiating leases and concession agreements.
In 2015, I was hired as the Property Coordinator for the Osage Nation’s Tribal Development and Land Acquisitions Department. After the Nation compacted Real Estate Services from the BIA in 2016, I was assigned Director. Under my leadership, we have worked diligently to restore and improve service to our Osage landowners.
I have dedicated my career to our Osage people. It was a blessing to serve generations of Osage families in a federal capacity. Now I’m seeking to continue my service through our Nation’s government to ensure our Osage shareholders have an experienced, knowledgeable advocate.
If elected, I will strive to remove barriers inhibiting the drilling and pumping of wells by directly addressing the issues stopping production. We must address the issue of BIA’s unwillingness to share production history/mineral well data with the OMC and potential lessees. One of my first initiatives will be to encourage the OMC to formulate a plan to require BIA to furnish our records and provide an adequate accounting from 2012 to date. We also must address the lack of federal regulations because it is unacceptable that BIA has failed to create rules and regulations that ensure the production of the OME for the past ten years. My experience in drafting federal regulations will aid the OMC in preparing our own rules and regulations and in negotiating with the federal government for finalization.
I look forward to discussing my experience and ideas with you. I respectfully request your support and vote in June of 2022.
firstname.lastname@example.org 2550 Oak Place.Pawhuska.OK.74056 918-638-9226
Editor’s Note: Candidate statements and announcements are not edited by the Osage News. They are a free submission offered to candidates of the 2022 Osage Nation General Election.